Here’s what is happening in and affecting South Africa today:
- President Cyril Ramaphosa is in a tough position after wage negotiations with the country’s 1.3 million civil servants have hit a standoff. State workers want an increase of as much as 12%, however Ramaphosa is under pressure to keep government spending under control – particularly when it comes the wage bill, which accounts for over a third of the country’s budget. [Bloomberg]
- Thousands of workers are expected to join the nationwide strike tomorrow as the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) calls for a national shutdown. The union is striking over new amendments that will make it harder to strike, the national minimum wage bill and its desire to be recognised by Nedlac. It has 800,000 members. [M&G]
- Eskom will be delving into its database to find smaller coal suppliers that can help provide it with coal to avert a growing supply crisis. The power utility says that things are not yet at an emergency level, but it is being forced to divert coal to stations that are running low. Eskom said there are currently no plans to reintroduce load shedding. [EWN]
- More government officials are going to be called to answer for their role in the naturalisation of the Gupta family. The officials, including cabinet ministers, will have to appear before parliament to explain the circumstances around the process, where it has been alleged that the Guptas’ residency was fast-tracked. [IOL]
- South Africa’s rand slumped to a three-month low on Monday, as emerging market currencies were pressured by a soaring dollar. On Tuesday the rand was trading at R12.32 to the dollar, R17.19 to the pound and R15.05 to the euro.